Jul '12 - Jan '13
The power of the architect card floats further here in India than any other. After roaming the caverns of the parking garage of Kanchenjunga Apartments, searching for an open service elevator or stairwell, I followed protocol and attempted my presumptuous stroll past lobby security. It was at this point of which I was intercepted. I pleaded my search was for a restroom, and was kindly escorted towards the nearest. Upon exit I began legwork. I fritted little time on small talk and proceeded hereupon to the big guns. I deployed my sketchbook and proceeded to flip through three years of worldly sketches. Wide eyed, they assumed my status as high architect and I took no action to correct them. I mentioned my adulation for Correa and his work, and then threw the final blow. "I am American," I stated. I was scheduled to return the following day at 11am for my private tour.
The elevator slowed to a halt on the 17th floor. My guide fiddled with the lock on a 4 ft wide wooden door, and it opened into a vastness of white walls and marble floors. The kitchen was sequestered from the open floor plan of the living and dining, and possessed a separate service door for servants. No bathroom was accessible directly from the living space, but each of the six bedrooms was given such an amenity.
The polarity of the unit, which accommodates its cross ventilation functions well as a cooling strategy, does so at the sacrifice of privacy. The bedroom wall adjacent the living space, although separated by a half story and pony wall, contains only latticework. Some visual and roughly all audio privacy is lost, but perhaps cultural idiosyncrasies allow for such a candid space.
All bedrooms are spacious, with built in wall closets, separate full baths and balconies. Westward rooms look inward towards the bustling cityscape, and the eastward toward the Arabian Sea. Maintenance, as one would surmise, is inapt. If paying 5-6 lakhs (~10,000) per month, I would expect cleaner windows. I should be quick to remember however, even though the price tag says New York, London, or Paris, it's still in India.
Warden Rd bends leaving Kanchanjunga on axis
In relation to the scale of the remainder, the kitchen appears meek in scale
The Westward View towards the Arabian Sea
The Eastern View towards Mumbai
The three appurtenances of every bedroom
Privacy vs. comfort: the latticework separating bedroom from living space
An Indo Inquisition is a thirteen-week train expedition across India. The journey will document the influences of international modernism and British occupation, as well as compare the effects of wealth accumulation, culture, religion, and poverty with economic growth and their effect on the built environment.